Mplayer Frustrations - Getting Closer

Kenny Gow kgfedora at
Sat Jul 9 03:13:08 UTC 2005

C.Beamer wrote:
> No, my symptoms are not quite the same.  I get sound and in the window
> where the video is supposed to play, it shows "mplayerplug-in" and it
> shows the text that says the file is streaming, but no video.  When it
> displayed the text that indicates the file is streaming, that's where I
> got the info that the format was "wmv" ;-)

Hello, I was reading along this thread and the mention of CNN video 
caught my eye, so I tried it again. It's never worked for me before on 
Firefox with the mplayerplug-in (2.80), but now it works somehow.

I just moved up to FC4 from FC3 and installed the latest mplayer and 
mplayerplug-in from source code. I also installed xine from source 
code. I use both media players extensively since each has some things 
the other doesn't.

Anyway, a bit of digging around revealed that the CNN video wants to 
use the WMV 9 codec. And, I just happened to have another PC that I 
put FC4 on and installed mplayer from livna as you did. I got the same 
problem as you did on this other PC when trying to play CNN videos: 
audio, but no video.

The short story is that the livna mplayer packages do not install the 
WMV codecs you need, specifically, the wmv9dmod.dll codec.

There are a couple of ways to get the codecs you need and install them 
to the right place.

On the mplayer codecs page,

it can be confusing which pack to get. The easiest choice is the "all" 
pack which contains all the codecs.

The livna mplayer install creates the /usr/lib/win32 but it's empty 
and that's the problem because that's where mplayer looks for the WMV 
codecs. So you can either create a symbolic link as one of the earlier 
posters described, or least copy the windows related codecs, the ones 
that start with "wm" to /usr/lib/win32.

A somewhat cleaner alternative is to grab the Xine windows codec 
package which comes in a nice rpm,

If you scroll down to the bottom of the Xine downloads page,

and click on the link cambuca...

and scroll to the bottom of that page, you can get the
w32codec package

If you are unfamiliar with installing rpms, you can install it like 
this (as root):

rpm -ivh w32codec-0.52-1.i386.rpm

which will populate the /usr/lib/win32 directory with the codecs you need.

I installed the w32codec package on my other PC and then I could see 
and hear the CNN video with Firefox and the mplayerplug-in. Firefox 
still hangs after playing the video but at least you can watch the 
video now.


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